A Caddo Parish jury found a Shreveport man guilty of second-degree murder in connection with a random automatic rifle fusillade on Interstate 49 in central Shreveport five years ago.
The six-man, six-woman jury in District Judge Ramona Emanuel’s court deliberated about 90 minutes Friday, May 21, 2021, before returning the unanimous guilty-as-charged verdict on John Fitzgerald Chatman, 34, of Shreveport. The trial commenced Monday, May 17, 2021.
Jurors determined that Chatman, travelling north on I-49 between 70th Street and Kings Highway on December 17, 2016, opened fire with an AK-47 on another vehicle. The gunfire fatally wounded the car’s 25-year-old driver, Donald Young. A female passenger in the car was not injured. Both were strangers to Chatman. No suspect developed until Chatman’s car was involved in another shooting, this time in the Cedar Grove neighborhood. The resulting investigation by Shreveport Police linked the two shootings and led to Chatman’s arrest.
Prosecutors were Assistant District Attorneys Nancy Berger-Schneider and Sam S. Crichton. Chatman was defended by Katherine Evans, Casey Simpson and Royal Alexander.
Chatman’s next appearance before Judge Emanuel will be June 29, 2021.